Iran-sympathizer Hadi Matar, 24, who attacked Salman Rushdie is charged with attempted murder

Hadi Matar, 24, will appear in court after being moved from the New York State Police barracks in Jamestown after the attack on Friday


The suspect accused of stabbing author Salman Rushdie has been charged with attempted murder after being transferred to Chautauqua County Jail last night.

Hadi Matar, 24, has been charged with attempted murder in the second degree and assault in the second degree, and was arraigned on the charges last night at Chautauqua County Jail.

He has been remanded without bail, and was moved from the New York State Police barracks in Jamestown after the attack on Friday.

New footage shows the alleged attacker in the back of a  state police car, with two officers in the front. 

He can be seen  looking away from the camera and appeared to be wearing a grey t-shirt – different to what he was wearing when he was arrested.

Rushdie, 75, was attacked by Matar as he got onto the stage to give a speech at the Chautauqua Institution.

He remains on a ventilator at UPMC Hamot in Erie, Pennsylvania, with his agent confirming that the nerves in his neck were severed in the attack, meaning that he could lose an eye.

Press are being banned from the first court appearance of Matar, with Chautauqua Country Warden Matthew Stuczynski claiming that the decision was down to ‘safety and security and good running order of the facility.’

Lucian Chalfen, spokesman for the New York State Unified Court System, claimed that the county jail is not set up for press attendance.

He added: ‘This is a town and village court, in that county the central location happens to be the jail. It is up to the Sheriff to accommodate if he can.’

Hadi Matar, 24, will appear in court after being moved from the New York State Police barracks in Jamestown after the attack on Friday

Hadi Matar, 24, will appear in court after being moved from the New York State Police barracks in Jamestown after the attack on Friday

New footage shows the alleged attacker in the back of a state police car, with two officers in the front

New footage shows the alleged attacker in the back of a state police car, with two officers in the front

New footage shows the alleged attacker in the back of a state police car, with two officers in the front

Salman Rushdie, 75, was attacked by a Hadi Matar, pictured with Sheriff's deputies, who approached him from behind before stabbing him multiple times. The suspect was quickly pinned to the floor before being arrested

Salman Rushdie, 75, was attacked by a Hadi Matar, pictured with Sheriff's deputies, who approached him from behind before stabbing him multiple times. The suspect was quickly pinned to the floor before being arrested

Salman Rushdie, 75, was attacked by a Hadi Matar, pictured with Sheriff’s deputies, who approached him from behind before stabbing him multiple times. The suspect was quickly pinned to the floor before being arrested

A Homeland Security Investigations Police officer enters the building where Salman Rushdie's alleged attacker Hadi Matar, lives in Fairview, New Jersey

A Homeland Security Investigations Police officer enters the building where Salman Rushdie's alleged attacker Hadi Matar, lives in Fairview, New Jersey

A Homeland Security Investigations Police officer enters the building where Salman Rushdie’s alleged attacker Hadi Matar, lives in Fairview, New Jersey

Matar, a sympathizer of the Iranian regime, rushed onto the stage at the literary festival in upstate New York as Rushdie was announced.

Rushdie has previously received death threats for his writing, with his book the Satanic Verses sparking protests in 1988

Rushdie has previously received death threats for his writing, with his book the Satanic Verses sparking protests in 1988

British-born Booker Prize winning author Sir Salman Rushdie (pictured in 2019) got death threats and was issued a fatwah by Iran for his 1988 novel, the Satanic Verses. He has lived in the U.S. since 2000 and was today preparing to give a lecture about America being a haven for writers in exile

He reportedly stabbed him multiple times, before being pinned to the ground by horrified witnesses and was apprehended by a state trooper.

Matar was also understood to be using a fake drivers licence in the name of Hassan Mughniyah – names which are linked to infamous terrorist organization Hezbollah.

The group’s current leader is named Hassan Nasralla, an one of the group’s most notorious figures was Imad Mughniyeh, who was killed in a CIA-linked assassination in Syria in 2008.

The driver’s license also included a reference to an address in West New York, New Jersey, less than three miles from his listed address in Fairview, New Jersey.

Matar, who police say gained access to the grounds with a pass, managed to walk off the stage before being restrained, as people rushed to assist Rushdie.

Witnesses to the stabbing say that the suspect wore black clothing and a black mask during the attack on The Satanic Verses author in Buffalo on Friday.

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Since the 1980s, the IRGC have been linked to Hezbollah, offering training and funding to the primarily Lebanon-based terrorist organization. Hezbollah’s logo is based on the IRGC’s.

The fake driver's license that was found on 24-year-old Hadi Mater bore the name Hassan Mughniyah. Both, the first and second names are linked to infamous terrorist organization Hezbollah

The fake driver's license that was found on 24-year-old Hadi Mater bore the name Hassan Mughniyah. Both, the first and second names are linked to infamous terrorist organization Hezbollah

The fake driver’s license that was found on 24-year-old Hadi Mater bore the name Hassan Mughniyah. Both, the first and second names are linked to infamous terrorist organization Hezbollah

One of the Hezbollah's most notorious figures was Imad Mughniyeh. He was killed in a CIA-linked assassination in Syria in 2008

One of the Hezbollah's most notorious figures was Imad Mughniyeh. He was killed in a CIA-linked assassination in Syria in 2008

One of the Hezbollah’s most notorious figures was Imad Mughniyeh. He was killed in a CIA-linked assassination in Syria in 2008

The authors suspected attacker was pinned down by witnesses and security staff moments after the attack. Rushdie's son Zafar, 42, is aware of the incident

The authors suspected attacker was pinned down by witnesses and security staff moments after the attack. Rushdie's son Zafar, 42, is aware of the incident

The authors suspected attacker was pinned down by witnesses and security staff moments after the attack. Rushdie’s son Zafar, 42, is aware of the incident

People rushed to assist the author after the attack, with the attacker being restrained by witnesses.  The motive for the stabbing is currently unknown

People rushed to assist the author after the attack, with the attacker being restrained by witnesses.  The motive for the stabbing is currently unknown

People rushed to assist the author after the attack, with the attacker being restrained by witnesses.  The motive for the stabbing is currently unknown

Booker Prize winner Salman Rushdie spent years in hiding after being issued ‘spiritual’ death threat by Iran

Sir Salman Rushdie is a Booker Prize-winning author and novelist.

The 75-year-old was born in India, and his writing is often based around the themes of connections and migrations between Western and Eastern civilizations.

He won the Booker Prize in 1981 for his second novel, Midnight’s Children. His writing has spawned 30 book-length studies, and over 700 articles on his writing.

Rushdie’s writings have broadly been acclaimed to the genres of magical realism and historical fiction.

He has been living in the US since 2000, and he was named a Distinguished Writer in Residence at New York University in 2015.

He has been shortlisted for the Booker Prize five times, including for Midnight’s Children, in 1983 for Shame, in 1988 for The Satanic Versus, in 1995 for The Moor’s Last Sign, and in 2019 for Quichotte.

Rushdie, 75, is an Indian-born acclaimed author and novelist

Rushdie, 75, is an Indian-born acclaimed author and novelist

Rushdie, 75, is an Indian-born acclaimed author and novelist

Rushdie was issued a fatwa – a death sentence – in 1989 by Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini after his book, the Satanic Verses, sparked and outcry with Muslims in Britain.

The book supposedly insulted the Prophet Mohammed and The Koran, with Khomeini calling for Rushdie’s death, and also called for Muslims to point him out to those who could kill him if they could not themselves.

Authorities descended on the Fairview, New Jersey home of Matar hours after he allegedly attacked Rushdie onstage.

Rushdie has previously received death threats for his writing, with his book the Satanic Verses which supposedly insulted the Prophet Mohammed and The Koran.

He wrote the Satanic Verses, which resulted in a culture war being sparked in 1988 in Britain – with protests taking place in the UK along with book burnings.

Pakistan banned the book, and he was issued a fatwa – a death sentence – by Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini in February 1989.

Khomeini called for the death of Rushdie and his publishers, and also called for Muslims to point him out to those who could kill him if they could not themselves.

The fatwa, or ‘spiritual opinion’, followed a wave of book burnings in Britain and rioting across the Muslim world which led to the deaths of 60 people and hundreds being injured.

Rushdie was put under round-the-clock security from 1989 to 2002, at the expense of the British taxpayer, when a $3million bounty was put on his head.

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He was forced to go into hiding for a decade with police protection, and previously said he received a ‘sort of Valentines card’ from Iran each year letting him know the country has not forgotten the vow to kill him.

In 2012, a semi-official Iranian religious foundation raised the bounty for Rushdie from $2.8 million to $3.3 million.

Other’s linked to the book have been attacked over the years, with Hitoshi Igarashi, who translated The Satanic Verses into Japanese, being stabbed to death on the campus where he taught literature.

His agent, Andrew Wylie, said that the author had suffered severed nerves and could lose an eye. he added that his liver was also damaged

His agent, Andrew Wylie, said that the author had suffered severed nerves and could lose an eye. he added that his liver was also damaged

His agent, Andrew Wylie, said that the author had suffered severed nerves and could lose an eye. he added that his liver was also damaged

State Trooper James O'Callaghan gave an update Friday evening following the stabbing

State Trooper James O'Callaghan gave an update Friday evening following the stabbing

State Trooper James O’Callaghan gave an update Friday evening following the stabbing

Medics rushed to the scene to take the author to hospital to treat his injuries. A Chautauqua Institution spokesperson, where the event was taking place, said: 'We are dealing with an emergency situation. I can share no further details at this time.'

Medics rushed to the scene to take the author to hospital to treat his injuries. A Chautauqua Institution spokesperson, where the event was taking place, said: 'We are dealing with an emergency situation. I can share no further details at this time.'

Medics rushed to the scene to take the author to hospital to treat his injuries. A Chautauqua Institution spokesperson, where the event was taking place, said: ‘We are dealing with an emergency situation. I can share no further details at this time.’

Ettore Capriolo, the Italian translator of the book, was knifed in his apartment in Milan.

The novel’s Norwegian publisher William Nygaard, was shot three times outside his home and left for dead in October 1993, but survived the attack.

In Turkey, the book’s translator, Aziz Nesin, was the target of an arson attack on a hotel that killed 37.

Rushdie previously wrote a 655-page fatwa memoir, which was nominated for the UK’s top non- fiction award, the Samuel Johnson prize.

During the fatwa he lived in permanent terror and at one point thought his ex-wife Clarissa Luard and their son Zafar, who was nine at the time, had been killed by assassins or kidnapped.

In 1998 Iran’s reformist president relaxed the fatwa and said it had no intention of tracking Rushdie down and killing him.

The Index on Censorship, an organization promoting free expression, said money was raised to boost the reward for his killing as recently as 2016, underscoring that the fatwa for his death still stands. 

New Jersey Police officers stand guard near the building where alleged attacker Hadi Matar, lives in Fairview, New Jersey

New Jersey Police officers stand guard near the building where alleged attacker Hadi Matar, lives in Fairview, New Jersey

New Jersey Police officers stand guard near the building where alleged attacker Hadi Matar, lives in Fairview, New Jersey

Dozens of onlookers quickly rushed to the stage to try to apprehend the suspect, and help Rushdie after he was attacked in front of hundreds

Dozens of onlookers quickly rushed to the stage to try to apprehend the suspect, and help Rushdie after he was attacked in front of hundreds

Dozens of onlookers quickly rushed to the stage to try to apprehend the suspect, and help Rushdie after he was attacked in front of hundreds

Blood was spattered on the wall behind where Rushdie had been attacked, with some also seen on a chair. New York State Police confirmed that Rushdie was stabbed in the neck

Blood was spattered on the wall behind where Rushdie had been attacked, with some also seen on a chair. New York State Police confirmed that Rushdie was stabbed in the neck

Blood was spattered on the wall behind where Rushdie had been attacked, with some also seen on a chair. New York State Police confirmed that Rushdie was stabbed in the neck

Rushdie was airlifted to hospital after receiving medical assistance from those at the event near Buffalo, in Upstate New York

Rushdie was airlifted to hospital after receiving medical assistance from those at the event near Buffalo, in Upstate New York

Rushdie was airlifted to hospital after receiving medical assistance from those at the event near Buffalo, in Upstate New York 

The Seventh Wave: Rushdie’s last published work focused on spies and assassinations

Salman Rushdie was serializing a novella called The Seventh Wave, on Sub Stack, which appeared to have a heavy focus on spies and organized killings. 

His latest piece of writing referenced men in ‘sodden balaclavas’:

Episode 48

The four men in black wearing sodden balaclavas are out in the open, closing in. ANNA and FRANCIS are on the terrace of the house, holding guns.

FIRST MAN (shouting)

Come down, Anna, Nobody gonna hurt you. And the other individual we don’t require.

ANNA (shouting back)

Hello, boys! Would you like a refreshing drink?

(They come closer.)

SECOND MAN (also shouting)

Don’t you crack wise now, Anna. No, we do not need no fucking drink. Maybe you didn’t notice it’s wet out.

ANNA (still shouting)

We have towels. You need to dry your hair?

(to FRANCIS)

They are within range now. This is too easy. We can take them all.

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FRANCIS

I don’t know, Anna. I can’t do it.

Credit: Sub Stack  

He has has two children from his four marriages – his other son is called Milan – but has been linked with many other women including Indian model Riya Sen.

The author was knighted in 2007 in Britain ‘for services to literature’ by his friend, then Prime Minister Tony Blair.

His last piece of writing was about an assassination attempt, serializing a novella called The Seventh Wave on Sub Stack, which appeared to focus on spies and assassinations.

The White house have also condemned that attack on Rushdie, with National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan calling it ‘reprehensible’.

In a statement he said: ‘Today, the country and the world witnessed a reprehensible attack against the writer Salman Rushdie.

‘This act of violence is appalling. All of us in the Biden-Harris Administration are praying for his speedy recovery.

‘We are thankful to good citizens and first responders for helping Mr. Rushdie so quickly after the attack and to law enforcement for its swift and effective work, which is ongoing.’

Event moderator Henry Reese, 73, a co-founder of an organization that offers residencies to writers facing persecution, was also attacked. He and Rushdie were due to discuss the United States as a refuge for writers and other artists in exile.

Reese was released from a hospital on Friday afternoon and in an emailed statement to the New York Times, he called Rushdie ‘one of the great defenders of freedom of speech and freedom of creative expression.

‘The fact that this attack could occur in the United States is indicative of the threats to writers from many governments and from many individuals and organizations.’

Governor Kathy Hochul called the attack on Rushdie ‘heartbreaking’ before confirming that he is ‘alive’, during and unrelated press conference.

She added that he is ‘getting the care he needs at a local hospital’, and that a state police trooper ‘stood up and saved his life’ after the attack.

One witness told the New York Times that Rushdie had been stabbed ‘multiple times’ and was lying in a pool of his own blood.

Muslim activists beat a burning effigy of Salman Rushdie in New Delhi after the book sparked outrage

Muslim activists beat a burning effigy of Salman Rushdie in New Delhi after the book sparked outrage

Muslim activists beat a burning effigy of Salman Rushdie in New Delhi after the book sparked outrage

Salman Rushdie (right) together with his fourth wife, model and Top Chef host Padma Lakshimi attending the Cannes Film Festival in 2004

Salman Rushdie (right) together with his fourth wife, model and Top Chef host Padma Lakshimi attending the Cannes Film Festival in 2004

Salman Rushdie (right) together with his fourth wife, model and Top Chef host Padma Lakshimi attending the Cannes Film Festival in 2004

Rita Landman offered her assistance after the incident, adding that he appeared to be alive and did not receive CPR.

Landman said: ‘People were saying, ‘He has a pulse, he has a pulse he has a pulse.’

Roger Warner of Cleveland, Ohio, was sitting on the front row when the attack took place, adding: ‘He was covered with blood and there was blood running down onto the floor.

‘I just saw blood all around his eyes and running down his cheek.’

Rushdie’s London-based son Zafar, 42, is aware of the incident and his father has been seen being transported by air ambulance after the attack.

Thousands of people in the audience gasped at the sight of the attack and were then evacuated as his alleged attacker was taken into custody.

Senator George Borrello branded the attack as ‘shocking’ adding that there is ‘no room’ for ‘beliefs that demand that you kill someone who disagrees with you’.

He added: ‘This shocking attack on a celebrated and noted author, apparently prompted by fundamentalist extremism, has no place in America.’



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